Smart Apparel Takes One Step Closer to Mainstream
Myant, a producer of connected textile-based products, has unveiled SKIIN, its new smart clothing platform, at CES in Las Vegas. SKIIN apparel is developed with fabric that allows the wearer to connect to the digital world in order to gain insight into their physical and mental wellbeing.
Sensors embedded in the fabric are able to read biological factors that provide insight into sleeping patterns, hydration and stress level. These sensors are connected to other smart IoT devices, such as phones, in order that users will be able to keep track of their health and physical activity.
The clothing will also reportedly be able to interact with the wearer’s connected environment, such as thermostats and lighting, while they are sleeping.
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The first products to be introduced are smart underwear and a smart bra that will be washable and wearable, designed for both style and comfort.
While it’s hard to tell if end-users will think that clothing that gives them access to such information is actually intrusive, it’s clear that there is definitely a rise in consumer demand for smart apparel. Smart watches and Fitbits have been popular for a few years now amongst athletes and casual users alike, and simpler devices such as touchscreen gloves have proven useful and sought-out items as well.
Smart apparel has been having quite a year as far as research and excitement are concerned. In November, it was announced that researchers from the University of Cambridge had developed a way to print electronic circuits directly into apparel. That same month, University of Washington researchers published their work on smart apparel that could be used to unlock doors and smartphones by storing passcodes.
This announcement from Myant adds even more excitement into the mix, showing that big companies are prepared to begin releasing these technologies into the public. If SKIIN manages to tap into the unique success of athleisure in both the promotional and retail apparel markets, it could be a tremendous success.